Okay, I thought I was having trouble cultivating a grateful heart, well, that is a breeze now compared to trying to cultivate a generous heart.
I feel nasty. I feel mean. I feel wicked. And as much as I wish I were different in dealing with this situation, I'm not at all sure I have a true desire to change the situation.
I definitely need a change of heart before I can develop a generous heart. But isn’t a desire to change the first step in actually changing? So really how do I cultivate a desire to change my heart?
Let me explain.
It is almost Summer and soon the pool parties and pool volleyball games will be starting and I will be inviting family and friends to join in the fun. Well, not all family and friends. I’m a snob about who I include. Not everybody makes the cut. I only include people that I feel comfortable around, I only invite people that I have fun with. And I exclude the rest. That is nasty, mean and wicked, that’s all there is to it. How do I change this feeling of wanting to exclude people?
I don’t mind so much being around people I have nothing in common with, but I don’t like being around people who make me feel like I have to walk on eggshells when they are near. I wouldn’t mind if we could just agree to disagree and move on, but when people who have the opposite view of mine are so vocal about their opinion, and they think that anyone who disagrees with them is just plain stupid, well, that kind of person I don’t want around me. I don’t enjoy at all being made to feel stupid for my political or religious views. And I hate being put in the position of trying to defend my views and beliefs or my religion. And, yet, if I remain silent that makes me just as anxious, plus it makes me feel cowardly. So I usually deal with the situation by ignoring and avoiding it at all cost, or rather ignoring and avoiding the people who I feel create the ugly situations for me. I know ~ nasty, mean and wicked, and not at all the sign of a generous heart. Because when I ignore and avoid these people, I am excluding them from my life, I am excluding them from my circle of family and friends, and I am excluding them from an opportunity of something they might find just as enjoyable or enriching as I do.
I try to make excuses for my selfish heart by putting the blame on others. I tell myself that there is the added factor of those whose company I do so enjoy. They will not be very happy if I include the ‘nay-sayers’, because the sole purpose for coming over to our home is for them to relax and enjoy themselves. There’s not much ‘fun’ or relaxation in having to watch every little comment you make, and I can well understand their stance as I share those same feelings. It is certainly much easier for me to feel generous toward the ‘fun’ people than it is to feel generous toward the 'not-so-enjoyable-to-be-around' people! But that is certainly not in line with developing a generous heart!
A generous heart does not judge. (I judge.)
A generous heart does not exclude. (I exclude.)
A generous heart is compassionate. (I’m not so very compassionate.)
A generous heart is kind. (I’m not so very kind either.)
A generous heart is peaceful. (My heart is definitely not at peace right now.)
So, does anyone have any ideas on how I go about developing a change of heart and start cultivating a generous heart? And when/if I do, how do I get others on board?
Any and all suggestions are welcome!
1 week ago